Winston Guards #2643 MS Division United Daughters of the Confederacy met on April 1, 2013 in the Colonial Room at Lake Tiak O’Khata at 5:30p.m. with fifteen members and three guests present. Hostesses were Barbara Pearson, Christy Creel, Rebekah Pearson and Beth Boatner. The tables were covered with white tablecloths and pastel napkins. Pastel flowers and yellow shredded paper were placed down the center of the tables. The speaker’s podium featured an Easter lily. Frances Woodruff, President called the meeting to order at 5:40p.m. Ruby Rogers, Chaplain led the group in a devotional and blessed the food. After the meal, Judy Goodin, Vice President led the group in the pledges, songs and rituals. Connie Faye Estes gave a report on some of our projects. She had taken newspapers to the local pound and eyeglasses to Dr. Clifton. She is still collecting Super Saver stamps as a fund raiser for our chapter. Earline Stewart, Treasurer gave her report. Judy Goodin read the minutes and they were approved as read. Judy Goodin made a motion to purchase 100 Confederate flags to be used on ancestor graves. Carolyn Mills seconded the motion. Frances is going to do a display at the Winston County Library during Confederate Heritage Month. Frances and Franklin Woodruff issued on invitation to the live shoot to be held on their farm on April 11-13, 2013.
Our program was Mrs. John McGavork(Carrie Elizabeth Winder), portrayed by Frances Woodruff. She welcomed us to her home Carnton, located in Nashville, TN. The house was built by her father-in-law Randal McGavork and named after his father’s birthplace in Ireland. She and John were married in December 1843 in Thibodeaux, LA. The couple added rooms and renovations to the house after their marriage. They had five children three of which died at an early age. The battle of Franklin, TN began on November 30, 1864 and only lasted five hours. There were 9500 soldiers killed, wounded, captured, or counted as missing. Of this number about 7000 were Confederate. Carnton became the largest field in the area. The house, yard and outside were soon full. Many were in the yard with temperatures below zero. At least 150 died the first night. Carrie soon became a nurse with the help of two small children. Blood stained many of the floors. On December 1 the bodies of Generals Patrick Cleburne and Hiram B. Grandbury were in the yard along with Colonel R. B. Young. General Grandbury’s chief of staff and Lieutenant John Marsh aide to General Stohl. The bodies were soon removed for burial. The Union forces evacuated Nashville in the early morning of December 1 leaving behind all the dead and severly wounded Union soldiers. There were about 1750 Confederate soldiers left to be buried near and along the length of the Federal breastworks, which spanned the southern edge of Franklin. Many of the Union soldiers were removed the families of the military and relocated. Most of the 1750 Confederate were identified and buried on the properties of Fountain Bench Carter and James McNutt. The graves were marked with wooden crosses. By Spring of 1866 the condition of the crosses and markers were worsening. The McGavocks donated two acres of land to be used as a permanent burial ground for the soldiers. Money for relocating was raised by the citizens of Franklin. Mr. George Cuppett was in charge of the relocation. Mr. Cuppett and his brother Marcellus and two others worked for ten weeks to complete this task. Wooden headstones were placed and footboards added in 1867. Mr. Cuppett wrote all the soldiers information and a book and upon completion of the book gave the gook to the McGavork’s. In 1896, the “John McEweb Bivouac” Veterans organization replaced the wooden makes with granite markers. Mrs. McGavork’ s daily walks through the cemetery earned her the title “Black Widow of the South”. At the conclusion of the program, we adjourned by holding hands and singing “Bless Be the Tie That Binds”.